|Ben 10: Eternal Forms|
|Season 1, Episode 6|
Cirque de Soledad
TEASER EXT. AFRICAN SAVANNA - DAY The sun beats down on the endless yellow grasslands of the savanna. Herds of zebras and water buffalo meander about, nibbling on grass roots. A single dirt road cuts through the bush. A low rumbling sounds, with several higher clatters. The animals look up, scatter. A DIY-looking bus shambles down the road, bouncing up and down with every crack in the road. INT. BUS - CONTINUOUS The transport is filled to the brim with African people from all walks of life, from well dressed businessmen to raggedy farmers. Some are chatting, some gaze out the window in silence. Two kids play a clapping game across the back seats. Focus on one lady as she watches the plains roll by. Bored. Until she sees the topless Jeep pulling up next to the bus. Four men sit in it. All are armed. Grinning like devils. EXT. AFRICAN SAVANNA - CONTINUOUS The bus is surrounded everywhere but the front. 3 identical cars. Uncomfortably close. And getting closer. The one on the right rubs its side against the bus with a deafening shriek. The bus, out of control, skids to a halt. The cars scatter, then reform in a triangle around the halted vehicle. The bandits get out and surround it. Load their guns. One of the armed men walks up to the door and aims right for the head of the bus driver. Note that when the bandits speak they will do so in an African language. Subtitles will be shown to translate. BANDIT 1 (subtitles) Open up! 2. The driver fearfully obliges. INT. BUS - CONTINUOUS The bandit and two others board and observe the cowering passengers through their crosshairs. One man reaches into his pocket and pulls out a wallet. Holds it out towards the intruders like a dirty rag. Bracing himself. MAN You can have my money, just don’t hurt me... The bandit right behind the first snatches it. BANDIT 2 (subtitles) We appreciate the donation. He prods the man’s forehead with the barrel of his rifle, making him quiver and shrink into the seat. The first bandit raises a hand, requesting attention. You could hear a pin drop. BANDIT 1 (subtitles) Congratulations. You all have been chosen to fight for the service of our Kata. You should be glad, it is truly an... honor, to die for him. The other two burst into hyena laughter. The two children in the back retreat into the arms of their terrified mother. One wails. The response is the barrel of the second bandit’s gun being pointed at the child’s skull. BANDIT 2 (subtitles; to mother) Your brats better shut up. We have little use for them. MOTHER (subtitles; absolute horror) No, you can’t! The bandit just smirks at her. Keeps the gun on them. 3. The third steps forward. Lifts his hand above his head- something’s in it. Looks like a metal egg, with something coming out of the top. It hums. BANDIT 1 (subtitles, smirking) I’m sure you all can’t wait to get started. Lucky for you, it won’t be much longer. The point on top of the egg pops up. Sparks. Buzzes like a swarm of bees. EXT. AFRICAN SAVANNA - CONTINUOUS WIDE: SAVANNA The bus is barely a dot on the screen. A dome of white light forms around it with a muffled puff. Explodes into a blinding shock-wave that sends the herds stampeding and reaches all the way to the camera. It dissipates. The bus is gone. THEME SONG
ACT I EXT. DESERT - EVENING Cold opening. Gwen is in the air, darting and weaving through the magenta projectiles flying at her from every direction. Wrists and ankles cuffed together and useless. Without the use of her arms and legs, she is struggling. She would have been even if they were free. We see her opponent- Grandma Verdona. Making Gwen both handicapped and outclassed. VERDONA Come on, Gwen, use your hair! GWEN I’m trying! Verdona launches a mana missile right at her. She attempts to catch it with her energy tendrils, but she’s too slow. Hits her right in the stomach. The impact sends her flying off like a rocket into the distance. In a split second she’s practically out of sight. 4. And hearing range. Verdona sighs. VERDONA This is going to be a long seventy-five years... Cut to Gwen, still barreling backwards. Totally out of control. She tries to flail her bound extremities to regain balance, but it’s futile. Losing altitude. Slams into the ground. Bounces. Flips and rolls a good fifty yards forward before skidding to a halt on her back. Groans in pain and frustration. She doesn’t get up. Instead, takes a few deep breaths to steady herself. Closes her eyes. GWEN (calm, even tone) I can do this. It’s just another part of my body, I have total control- Her affirmation is cut short by the pitch-hiking wail of a speeding car coming right towards her. She jolts into a sitting position. Gives the headlights a deer stare. Tries to stand and run, but only manages to flip onto her stomach. Wriggles for the side of the road. Not a chance of making it. In a last ditch effort she throws her mana hair forward, wrapping it around a nearby cactus. Pulls. Slides right off the street. And into a face-full of cactus needles. The car skitters to a halt little distance down the road. Doors pop open. Gwen sits up. Tries to pluck the spines from her face, though it’s difficult and awkward with her hands tied together. A shadow approaches from behind. She turns. A dark-skinned man, suit and sunglasses. When he speaks, he does with an accent. He looks her over thoughtfully. MAN IN SUIT Are you Gwen Tennyson? She glances down at herself. Looks up, "no-duh" stare. 5. GWEN What do you think? INT. LOS SOLEDAD - MEETING ROOM - NIGHT The meeting room is a space set up in one of the Los Soledad buildings, and will be a recurring setting in this show. The colors are gray and drab like the rest of the abandoned base, but special touches have been added to make homey. A couch in the corner with a little TV. A work bench with alien tech scattered across it. A wooden table in the center with a few fold-up chairs. In those chairs sit Ben as Swampfire, Gwen (still shackled), and the man in the suit. Kevin leans against a wall nearby. SWAMPFIRE Yaronda? GWEN It’s a country in central Africa. SWAMPFIRE Never heard of it. KEVIN Doesn’t mean much from the guy who suggested hiding out in Canadia. SWAMPFIRE (defensive) It’s a common mistake! GWEN (to Man in Suit) Excuse them. So you’re here on behalf of the Yaronda government? MAN IN SUIT Indeed, and I am here to request- SWAMPFIRE (cutting off) That we risk our own butts to go and fix some mess you got yourselves into? No thanks. KEVIN We don’t do politics. Never ends well. 6. MAN IN SUIT You must understand, this is an issue that directly involves your- KEVIN Not interested. GWEN Oh come on guys, at least hear him out. (to Man in Suit) What is it you need help with exactly? MAN IN SUIT (gravely) Kata’s Army. SWAMPFIRE Who? The man gets up and crosses folds his arms behind his back. stares into the distance away from the table dramatically. MAN IN SUIT A rebellion force led by a man named John Kata. He kidnaps innocent civilians and forces them to fight for his cause and raid the cities they lived in. If they don’t... He trails off. Swampfire and Gwen look at each other, disgusted at the idea. GWEN (mortified) That’s terrible! MAN IN SUIT It has been reported that several American tourists have been taken. KEVIN Still not our problem. We’re only kinda affiliated with the US. Go ask the FBI. MAN IN SUIT We also have reason to believe that Kata is in possession of some powerful alien technology. Gwen and Swampfire look surprised. They turn to Kevin. 7. SWAMPFIRE That, on the other hand, is our problem. KEVIN What proof does he have? MAN IN SUIT (from behind) Several buses have suddenly vanished off the road in flashes of bright light. Their passengers were later found acting as soldiers in Kata’s Army. GWEN Sounds like tech to me. SWAMPFIRE It’s worth checking out. Kevin sighs and grunts. KEVIN Fine. But after we snag the tech we’re out of there. No getting involved. Swampfire turns back to the man. SWAMPFIRE We’re in. MAN IN SUIT Ah, that is a relief to hear! He stands and holds out a hand across the table. Swampfire accepts the handshake. The man hands Swampfire a slip of paper with an address, along with two plane boarding passes. SWAMPFIRE Huh? Gwen cranes her neck to see what he got, since she can neither stand nor grab at it; he passes her one of the tickets. MAN IN SUIT Meet us at this airport tomorrow at nine AM. We will be flying straight to Yaronda. Tell no one. 8. Gwen and Swampfire examine the boarding passes. GWEN (critical) You’re sending us on a public airline? SWAMPFIRE (impressed) First class, not bad. I don’t see the problem. GWEN Ben, we’re aliens. I doubt they’d even let us on the plane. SWAMPFIRE ...good point. Can’t we just, ya know, fly ourselves? MAN IN SUIT The rebels are watching air traffic along the borders. They have made it clear that they will shoot down everything but registered passenger planes. GWEN (following) Including us. SWAMPFIRE Ooooh, I get it! You’re using the plane as a cover to get us past their watch. MAN IN SUIT Precisely. GWEN Well, if we’re leaving tomorrow morning, I should have Grandma take these cuffs off now so I can- She’s cut off by a door swinging open. Verdona pokes her head through. VERDONA Not unless you’ve learned to control your mana hair. 9. GWEN Grandma, this is important, I think we can put the exercise aside for- VERDONA (cutting her off again) If you can’t do it with your hands and feet tied together, you have no business doing it at all! GWEN But Grandma!- And she’s gone, as suddenly as she appeared. Gwen slumps in her chair. GWEN (apologetic) I think I’ll have to sit this one out, guys. SWAMPFIRE (sighs) I guess we can handle this on our own. KEVIN My only question, how are we going to get me on the plane? The man looks puzzled for a moment, and pulls out a few papers. Flips through. MAN IN SUIT I’m afraid you won’t be getting on at all. KEVIN What?! MAN IN SUIT I only have invitations issued for Ben and Gwen Tennyson, nothing for... (beat) Who are you again? Kevin takes a threatening stomp closer to the man. He jumps up in his seat. KEVIN (enraged) That’s not fair! I work just as hard as either of those two! 10. MAN IN SUIT (fearful) Don’t blame me, I’m simply the messenger! Gwen turns in her chair and puts her hands on Kevin’s arm calmly. Looks up at him. GWEN It’s not worth it. Kevin looks down at her, grunts, and returns to leaning on the wall. SWAMPFIRE Guess that means I’m ridin’ solo. MAN IN SUIT (cryptically) Not exactly. EXT. AIRPORT - AVIATION PARKING - MORNING The part of the airport where airplanes are kept when they’re being loaded with passengers before takeoff. A single airliner sits far from any of the gates, a rolling staircase leading up to its door. The man in the suit stands beside it, and a group of four lingering nearby. Big Chill touches down before the man. The man gestures to the group and opens his mouth to say something- One of the boys in the group pushes forward and steps right between Big Chill and the man. He’s a burly teen, 16 or so, with a football jersey and a proud stance. He has two black dots equidistant on his forehead, and from behind we can see two purplish gems going up from the base of his skull through his stubbly blond buzz cut. BOY Well well, if it isn’t the great Ben 10. He holds out his hand for Ben to shake. BOY Magister Tennyson has told us a lot about you. BIG CHILL (surprised) You know Grandpa? 11. BOY Of course, we’re his new team. S.N.A.K.E’s our name. The next generation of half-alien heroes! He shift to the side and points out the other teammates one by one: BOY That’s Deon- A tall, dark skinned boy with the beginnings of an afro. His dress is cleaned and polished, and he has an awkward air to his posture. BOY (cont.) Tabby- A red-haired beauty with an intense and annoyed look to her. She shamelessly wears booty shorts and a brick red, rather revealing sweetheart top a la Jennifer Nocturne’s dress in Catch a Falling Star. BOY (cont.) Ondine- She’s barely there, under the pulled hoodie and baggy sweatpants. Her hands are pushed in her pockets and her shadow-cast face hangs slightly. BOY (cont.) And there’s Timothy on her shoulder. A tiny Galvan boy perches on Ondine’s shoulder. A small tuft of brown hear sprouts from the top of his head. The boy points to himself dramatically. BOY (conceited) And I’m Agent Josh Kyle. Technically we’re not supposed to have ranks in our group, but I’m kinda their leader. Behind him, the man taps his foot. 12. MAN IN SUIT We must hurry, we have a tight schedule. Josh takes the liberty of boarding first, without so much as looking at anyone else. Big Chill shakes his head and motions for the rest of the team to go ahead before him. Tabby passes by him, followed by Ondine, still with Timothy riding her. They both slow down near him. TABBY He is not our leader. ONDINE (hushed) He’s not even an agent yet! Timothy giggles as the girls carry him away and onto the plane. Big Chill follows them. The camera zooms out until the whole plane can be seen and the edge of the airport roof is in the foreground. A darkened figure sits on the ledge, overlooking the scene with binoculars. EXTREME CLOSE UP: FIGURE’S FACE His lips curl up into a diabolical grin. INT. AIRPLANE - MAIN CABIN - CONTINUOUS The plane is nearly empty, besides Ben and S.N.A.K.E. Big Chill glances around, confused. BIG CHILL Aren’t there supposed to be passengers? They all slip into their seats, all in a single row. Big Chill ends up in the second seat from the window, right next to Deon. DEON That man said he didn’t want to risk any spies getting on board. Big Chill pauses for a second, staring Deon down quizzically. He starts looking rather uncomfortable. Pulls at his collar. 13. DEON (nervous) What? BIG CHILL Your voice sounds really familiar. Just like that, the nerves vanish. DEON Well, I was a quarter-finalist on SuperStar Singoff. BIG CHILL (surprised) Wait, seriously? Ondine suddenly leans over across the aisle. ONDINE He would have gotten farther if he didn’t power up onstage his first live performance. Deon buries his face in one hand in embarrassment. DEON (exasperated) Ondine! BIG CHILL Actually I think I remember hearing something about that... duplication, right? No response. ONDINE (loud whisper) He doesn’t like talking about it. BIG CHILL Oh. Uh... What I meant was, weren’t you the guy who gave Kevin and I the hint on where Gwen was two weeks ago? DEON Oh yeah. That too. CAPTAIN (V.O) (over intercom) This is your captain speaking, we are preparing for take off. 14. EXT. AIRPORT - RUNWAY - CONTINUOUS Camera follows the plane outside as it starts down the runway. In the background, the captain’s voice gives the usual lecture about seat belts and no smoking and putting your seat in the upright position until further notice. Takeoff. Cut to: EXT. AIRPLANE - DAY Thousands of feet in the air, right over the cloud line. We see the tail of the plane, which reads Lusitania Airlines. INT. AIRPLANE - MAIN CABIN - CONTINUOUS Seat belt signs turn off. CAPTAIN (V.O) You are now free to move about the cabin. TABBY Thank god. She stands, without having to unbuckle. Timothy gives her a questioning look. TIMOTHY Did you even put your seat belt on? She just shrugs. Squeezes past Josh and into the aisle. Retreats to the back towards the bathrooms. ONDINE (absentmindedly) Poor girl, her Orishan DNA gives her an overactive bladder. BIG CHILL (grossed out) Eeew! JOSH (glaring) TMI, Ondine! 15. ONDINE Oh, sorry. Timothy hops off of Ondine’s shoulder and lands on the armrest, facing Big Chill. TIMOTHY Changing the subject... you can turn into a Galvan, right? BIG CHILL (nodding) Yes, and a lot of other stuff too. Timothy looks down shyly, rubs the back of his head. TIMOTHY Well, uh... you think you could turn into one for me? I’ve never gotten to see another one before. EXT. AIRPLANE - CONTINUOUS We see the exterior of the plane as the conversation continues inside. BIG CHILL You haven’t? 6 small red dots creep into the frame from the side of the screen with the plane’s tail. BIG CHILL (cont.) You’re half alien, right? What about your mom or dad? The dots are getting closer. They form a ring around the plane’s body. TIMOTHY I never met my dad. My mom said she would take me to meet him, but then I turned full Galvan last year and ran away in a panic, so... They all touch down on various parts of the plane. EXTREME CLOSE UP: A GLOVED HAND 16. places an odd machine down on the plane’s exterior. It looks like a bowl with three metal, egg-shaped masses, passed with wild masses of wires. Four prongs sprout from the bottom of the bowl, digging into the metal. The tips of the eggs glow red. BIG CHILL Aw man, that stinks. Sure, I’ll show you Grey Matter. INT. AIRPLANE - MAIN CABIN - CONTINUOUS Timothy watches in excitement as Big Chill stands, unfolds his wings so he can get at the Omnitrix, and presses down. A bubbling flash of green. Big Chill is gone, and in his place- The Ultimatrix? Ondine, Timothy and Deon lean over to stare at the motionless alien watch on the ground, horribly confused. Tabby comes from down the walkway, stops and raises an eyebrow at the scene. DEON (worried) Ben? Beat of tense silence. The faceplate glows green. ULTIMATRIX I’m okay! When in Ultimatrix mode, Ben’s voice sounds like his own, only electronically distorted. Deon sighs with relief. Timothy looks dissapointed. TIMOTHY Weren’t you gonna go Grey Matter? ULTIMATRIX Well, I was trying to... hold on... The faceplate pops up, generating a hologram of Big Chill. It starts turning, changing the picture- Cannonbolt, Echo Echo, Ampfibian, finally Grey Matter. It slams itself down with another flash. The light fades. Nothing happened. 17. ULTIMATRIX What the- He’s cut short but the sound of metal clattering to the ground, followed by a woosh of air. Their heads all shot up and around towards the source of the noise. A sizable hole cut right into the ceiling of the cabin. The air stops rushing, as if the pressure had equaled out which it shouldn’t have under the circumstances. They watch in stillness, holding their breath. Someone falls down through the opening into a crouch. Rises. It’s one of the Falcon guys from the opening of Goodbye and Good Riddance. A man clad in full body blackish-blue armor resembling a bird, completely with a wing cape. Two of the emergency exit doors are kicked open. There’s no rush of air this time. Five more enter the cabin, all different colors- red, green, and purple from the left door, and gold and grey from the right. The Blue Falcon smirks. BLUE FALCON Alright, let’s get this over with. He lifts his right hand. In it, and energy pistol. Charged and loaded. Pointing right at them. END OF ACT I
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